Soybean School: Putting the pinch on cyst nematode

Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) continues to spread across Ontario. The yield-robbing pest was first discovered in the southwest of the province in 1988 and continues to expand north and eastward.

OMAFRA plant pathologist Albert Tenuta encourages all growers to take a close look at their soybean fields to determine whether the pest is present. SCN yield losses in Ontario can range from 5% to 100% in fields where the pest is established.

Tenuta is often asked how growers can distinguish the tiny SCN eggs from nodules, sand grains and other debris. In this episode of RealAgriculture Soybean School, he shows us the ‘zit test’ – a simple test growers can use to determine whether they have SCN in their fields. In the video, Tenuta encourages growers to dig up plants, grab the roots and pinch the suspected eggs. “If it’s a cyst, it’s going to pop. It’s just like a zit,” he says.

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